well, it's third time lucky for me with these decorations. you wouldn't think that drying oranges would be that difficult would you?
last year i decided i would dry some orange slices to hang prettily on the tree and around the house. i don't quite know what went wrong but they ended up all brown and squidgy! then i ran out of time and inspiration so just left it as a failed experiment.
this year, a little more browsing on the internet seems to have done the trick and it worked!
well, it worked on the third attempt - here's a wee hint for you ... when you're waiting for the oranges to finish drying, don't think "oh, i'll just wrap myself up in this snuggly blanket and watch a little tv for the last hour they're drying" because, if you're anything like me, you'll wake up six hours later and just manage to stop the little blackened orange slices from setting your oven on fire!
so, i think the trick was slicing the oranges and placing between two tea towels for a day to remove a lot of the surface moisture.
then i popped them in the oven (on a rack, to allow the air to circulate) at 135C/275F/Gas Mark 1 for the first hour, and turned the oven down to 110C/225F/Gas Mark 1/4 for the next two to three hours.
i did keep an eye on them this time and turned them every hour. i think they took a little longer than three hours but perhaps i had sliced them a little thickly. what you're looking for is the flesh of the orange to be dried out without starting to brown.
and here are the finished deccies ...